The Darren Effect
An affair. A marriage. Accidental encounters. A secret spying mission masquerading as research for a short story on desire. This is the rich ground from with The Darren Effect springs, carrying us through the complexities, tragedies, and unanticipated triumphs of love and loss. The Darren Effect is a miraculous novel, in which the characters coalesce and crisscross in awkw...more
Paperback, 255 pages
Published March 1st 2008 by Goose Lane Editions
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What an unexpected pleasure in finding Libby Creelman’s -The Darren Effect. My brother, I., got it for me for Christmas in a stack of other books - 20 odd or so (I think I may have blogged about the stack already as I’ve slowly been making my way through his selections). In any event, the whole stack has its own shelf and so this time, without reading the back or deliberating on a title, I randomly stuck out my arm and picked a book. And boy was my intuitive snatch rewarded. -The Darren Effect-...more
The complexities of the character's relationships kept me on my toes. Though I can't relate to affairs and I don't really understand how people can be so ... not loyal... but this affair just kept the story going. I wanted to know exactly what Isabella knew about it, and what she did. I have to say that I'm surprised that she didn't come out with it. I'm not entirely sure whether I think she's strong or too weak to handle it. As for Heather, well I pity her for losing a man she loved. But that's...more
This book had promise in the beginning. It had me hooked. I found the writing to be a little scattered and hard to follow at the start but I have read plenty of books like that and it can add to the anticipation of what's to come. You just read on and eventually things start to fall in to place and it becomes a rewarding experience. This book did not do that for me. It just continues to read like fragments of someone's thoughts and still, I hoped for something special at the end but it just neve...more
Creelman tries to make an interesting story - but with her scattered focus jumping around to so many characters, the plot loses its direction. Also, her writing fails to provide necessary details about the characters' inner thoughts, and as a result they all come across as one-dimensional people lacking depth. Perhaps Creelman is trying to follow the "show, don't tell" rule, but she doesn't show enough to be effective.
The Darren Effect is a subtle, assured, stunningly effective novel. Populating her book with oddball characters who find themselves emotionally adrift and struggling with loss and loneliness, Libby Creelman shows us how life can evolve in ways we don't expect and hardly dare to hope. This is literary fiction but it will appeal to casual readers attracted to stories of emotional resiliance. Highly recommended.